Sunday, February 06, 2005

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What I bought and what I thought, week of February 2!

CONCRETE: THE HUMAN DILEMMA 2 it just me, or does Concrete, standing in the distance all pensive and stuff, look like a big gray penis on that cover? Anyway, it's kinda appropriate given the theme of this miniseries, namely global overpopulation. After a rather clumsy and forced sermon on that very subject, we then get a little fatal road rage action then a surprisingly erotic scene which, despite the strangeness of the whole thing, works very well. It also promises something which, I suspect, will be more significant to longtime readers than neophytes. You just never know what you're gonna get with this book sometimes. A-

Adam gets another step closer to finding out what has happened to his adopted homeworld in another solid, if not especially remarkable one way or the other, chapter. About the only thing I knew about the L.E.G.I.O.N. concept and book, which I didn't buy back in the day, was that a Braniac ancestor/descendant named Vril Dox is in charge, and sure enough, here he is. The Omega Men return, and provide effective comic relief and plot threads, Pascal Ferry still can't draw figures that aren't coiled, tense and ready for action, even when standing still, and I actually thought the coloring was better than last issue. I don't know whether it's Ferry or the colorist who's responsible for putting such a soft-focus edge on everything, but I wish he'd stop. Makes me want glasses. B+

For those who complain about decompressed storylines in ongoing comics. With the black dog of cancellation nipping at their heels, writers Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray squeeze about four issues' worth of story into one as we see the resolution of the Alice kidnapping, her second detox in one comics year, belated Christmas gifts, and a reveal we already knew was coming in a sappy ending conveniently titled "The Sappy Ending". Despite the supercompression, this was actually a better read than the last three issues, and a fitting farewell for a title that had potential in equal measure to the total weight of its protagonist. B+

Recalling instances in the past when Tommy Lee Edwards drew Superman, and liking those (as I tend to do with fave Edwards), and also recalling writer Rick Veitch's take on the Supes legend, Maximortal, I was anticipating the much-hyped guest appearance by the Man of Tomorrow in this issue. Well, so much for anticipation. Supes' appearance is little more than a finger wagging cameo, and Edwards chose to hide his features behind the Photoshop "find edges" filter which is supposed to represent the Question's "shaman sight" it was more frustrating than anything. Veitch and Edwards fare better when giving us Q running around messing up the underground operation of villain Minos, and advancing the whole Science Spire/buried ghosts thing, which has me curious to where it's going. Could have been better, could have been worse. B+

You know, if you want spandex action, you could do a lot worse than this title. Of course, the dark shadings will repel some, but writer Joe Kelly, resisting his well-known penchant for convolution, is doing some great character stuff and for once the sci-fi plot doesn't strain credibility, either, if you accept the whole multi-dimensional travel aspect of the thing. We even get this tied in to Kirby's Fourth World towards the ending, and a faint sense of wonder in even invoked. Of course, if not for the art of Doug Mahnke and Tom Nguyen, I wouldn't even be buying this in the first place, and they don't disappoint. For them that likes, here it is. B+

MIA: Shanna The She-Devil 1, because my shop sold out. More copies are coming from another store, they tell me.

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